Revealed: Names of MPs who ‘travelled with Covid-19 patient’

Wednesday, March 18th, 2020 14:00 | By
Parliament in session. Photo/PD/SAMUEL KARIUKI

Panic and anxiety yesterday gripped Parliament after it emerged that some MPs and staff had come into contact with the fourth patient who tested positive for coronavirus.

When announcing the fourth case, Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe on Tuesday said the patient travelled from London and arrived in Kenya on March 9.

Mutahi said tracing of persons who may have come into contact with the patient is ongoing.

 In the Senate, Leader of Majority Kipchumba Murkomen (Elgeyo Marakwet), while moving an adjournment motion, told the House that the fourth patient had travelled in the same plane with some legislators and members of  the Parliamentary Service Commission.

He said the legislators, who also serve as PSC commissioners and the staff, were in the same London-Nairobi flight with the patient said to have tested positive at a private health facility. 

“The decision to adjourn the House was reached by PSC which is recommended to both Houses, but it is not binding on us.

We are not a conveyor belt to accept everything that comes from the PSC. But there is a story behind it,” he said.

“The commission itself has scaled down staff. There is also information that many people had travelled.

In fact, there are some people who belong to this House and National Assembly who were in the same flight with the fourth victim,” he added.

The People Daily has established that legislators who had travelled to London include senators George Khaniri (Vihiga) and Aaron Cheruiyot (Kericho) and National Assembly members Adan Keynan (Eldas) and Naomi Shaban (Taita Taveta) as well as unidentified PSC staff.

Indeed, National Assembly Speaker Justin Muturi ordered Keynan and Shaban out of the Chamber after Endebes MP Robert Pukose raised concern that his colleague (Keynan) had just arrived from the UK.

Leader of Majority Aden Duale also alerted the Speaker that Shaban had travelled to London. Shaban promptly walked out.

“The commissioner just arrived from London. For the sake of health of the MPs, I ask you to order him to leave the Chamber. This is a serious matter,” said Pukose.

In Senate, Murkomen’s sentiments elicited reactions from Members, with Makueni’s Mutula Kilonzo and his Nyamira counterpart Okong’o Omogeni pushing Murkomen to disclose the name of those who had travelled abroad.

Citing the Texas Senator Teddy Cruz case, who was in a meeting with a Brazilian who tested positive and went into self-quarantine, Omogeni urged members to take precautionary measures to avoid exposing their colleagues to health risks.

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